One of the true pioneers of baseball, Harry Wright (d.1895) assembled the roster for the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings. This dominant squad was the first ever fully paid professional team, with Wright serving as player-manager and his brother George manning the shortstop position. For his decades of guiding 19th Century NABBP and MLB teams and his many innovating contributions to the sport, Wright was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1953, joining his brother who was inducted in 1937.
Baseball historians will have to battle it out with advanced autograph collectors, to claim this 1892 Harry Wright signed ledger sheet. This watermarked document lists receipts and expenses for a Philadelphia Phillies road trip to Baltimore, to play the Orioles in National League competition. The listings on the offered page were entered by Wright, by means of a steel-tip fountain pen. Though the top edge of this 6x8 ledger page is torn irregularly, this condition could easily be covered over with strategic matting, with plenty of content still visible, including the entry "Meals at Balt.". Several compacting folds are noted, but the page remains crisp and the written content is readily discernible. Wright has signed at bottom right, and his antique signature still shows a ("7") degree of potency. He has also included the abbreviation "Mgr", indicating his position with the 1892 Phillies, who fielded five Hall of Famers in Ed Delahanty, Sam Thompson, Billy Hamilton, Roger Connor and Tim Keefe. Full photo LOA from JSA.